ILLINOIS STATE HOUSE DISTRICT 7: Welch-Backed Reform Creates Protections for Survivors of Sexual Assault
Illinois State House District 7 issued the following announcement on July 29.
Survivors of sexual assault who are wanted for non-violent, low-level offenses will be able to come forward without fear of law enforcement under new legislation backed by state Rep. Emanuel ‘Chris’ Welch, D-Hillside.
“Priority number one should be protecting survivors of sexual assault,” Welch said. “No survivor should be deterred from coming forward because they fear being arrested for a low-level crime. This proposal will help protect survivors and help law enforcement get the dangerous perpetrators of these heinous crimes off our streets.”
The Welch-backed House Bill 92 protects sexual assault victims with arrest warrants for non-violent crimes by ensuring that they will not be taken into custody if they report the assault to law enforcement or medical professionals. Instead, law enforcement is required only to issue the survivor a notice to appear in court. This exemption does not apply to survivors who have a warrant for a violent crime or forcible felony.
“HB 92 is a crucial step forward for victims reporting sexual assault,” said Carrie Ward, Executive Director of the Illinois Coalition Against Sexual Assault. “Victims should not face the potential of being arrested as a result of reporting rape. This victim-centered legislation will help propel Illinois forward in its efforts to prosecute rapists and secure justice for rape survivors.
Original source can be found here.